We have become pleasure-seeking people. Commercials and shows on TV, posts on social media, and ads in magazines bombard us with ways we can live “the good life.” Carpe diem (seize the day) is the cry of the age. The Webster Dictionary Online describes this phrase as “the enjoyment of the pleasures of the moment without concern for the future.” We selfishly want it all, and we want it now.
There is nothing wrong in enjoying pleasurable things. But if we put our trust in that as the source of our happiness, it may become a stumbling block. Pleasure seeking can be addictive ― an adrenaline rush and emotional high which all too quickly fades. Wealth, power, physical gratification, and luxuries are all niceties, but if we make them the source of our joy, we will end up disappointed. King Solomon, known as the wisest man who ever lived, wrote that “All of it is meaningless, a chasing after the wind” (Ecclesiastes 2:17).
Christ offers something better. "For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit" (Romans 4:17). When we truly embrace the idea that what God offers us in the eternal realm is far greater than we could imagine, then our focus changes. Instead of seeking more and more things to please us, we begin to find contentment in His love for us. This allows us to do things to please others, which in turn pleases God. Now, that’s pure joy!
Lord Jesus, show me where I place my joy today. Is it in you and in doing your will, or is it in my self-serving desire to be happy? You have blessed me in so many ways. Let me seek after you, not the momentary pleasures of this world, and let me focus on pleasing others instead of myself. Amen.
Go Deeper ― Do something anonymously for someone else today. Pay for their coffee as well as yours, or pickup the trash in their lawn. Leave flowers from your garden on their doorstep so they can enjoy them as much as you do. Then talk with God about how it made you feel.
Did you miss Julie Cosgrove's other devotion earlier this month? Read A Triple Blessing.
Photo Credit: Mi Pham